State Rep. Dwight Bullard, D-Miami, on Monday filed a public school bill that strikes the use of FCAT as the most important student performance assessment tool beginning with 2015-2016 school year.
A Florida House Democratic Caucus press release states:
House Bill 1341 phases out in four years the use of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) as the only tool for determining student and school performance in most grades. The FCAT would be replaced with an accountability plan that considers the entirety of what students learn throughout the year instead of the current practice of judging performance on one standardized test.
“For too long, Florida’s education accountability system has put emphasis on getting students to pass the FCAT instead of focusing on the individual needs of every child,” said Representative Bullard. “Hard-working teachers are crying for the freedom to teach to students instead of a test. This legislation will empower teachers to teach.”
State Sen. Maria Sachs, D-Delray Beach, is sponsoring Bullard’s bill in the Senate. The senator organized an education summit in January in which participants agreed states need to test students, but added that recent experiences in different school districts show that relying on the FCAT model does not secure better performance.